LADIES. PLEASE PAY IMMEDIATE ATTENTION. A MAN IS OFFERING HIS OPINION.
ALERT: Hollywood movie actor person Russell Crowe is fed up with all the old ladies who dare to want to be cast as something other than old spinsters or whatnot. Via Woman's Weekly:
The best thing about the industry I'm in – movies – is that there are roles for people in all different stages of life," Russell says, in an interview with The Weekly. "To be honest, I think you'll find that the woman who is saying that (the roles have dried up) is the woman who at 40, 45, 48, still wants to play the ingénue, and can't understand why she's not being cast as the 21 year old.
Sure, maybe. Or maybe it's because women expect that while their male counterparts are allowed to play younger than their age they might, just might be too? Strange how in an industry where actors vehemently defend people like Jared Leto playing a trans character or white actors cast as non-white characters on the grounds that acting is about stepping outside of your physical barriers it's such an affront to consider that women be allowed to step outside of their actual ages.
"Meryl Streep will give you 10,000 examples and arguments as to why that's bullshit, so will Helen Mirren, or whoever it happens to be. If you are willing to live in your own skin, you can work as an actor. If you are trying to pretend that you're still the young buck when you're my age, it just doesn't work."
That's why Clint Eastwood, Sylvester Stallone, Arnold Schwarzenegger and Bruce Willis failed so spectacularly, right?
Speaking animatedly now, Russell continues: "I have heard of an actress, part of her fee negotiation was getting the number of children she was supposed to have lessened. Can you believe this? This (character) was a woman with four children, and there were reasons why she had to have four children – mainly, she lived in a cold climate and there was nothing to do but fornicate all day - so quit arguing, just play the role!
Right, women in Hollywood! Quit complaining that you're cast in a role where your character has "nothing to do but fornicate all day" and make a bunch of babies. Stop demanding that filmmakers try to expand the depth of your character beyond "broodmare." Just play the role, OK?
"The point is, you do have to be prepared to accept that there are stages in life. So I can't be the Gladiator forever," he said. Which is something he has the luxury and privilege of doing because in a male-dominated industry such as Hollywood there are always going to be roles for the men, at whatever stage in their life they see fit to glorify.
Funny how Crowe doesn't bother to offer any opinion about the mind boggling legacy of Hollywood men playing romantic leads to women 10,20, 30, and sometimes 40 (!!!!!) years younger than them. Because it's clearly the sad old women daring to pretend they are outside their actual birth ages that are ruining Hollywood. It's good to know that he is only bothered by the idea that women dare to expect the same treatment by studios as their "sexy" older male counterparts. How wonderful that Crowe is thrilled that Streep plays "her age." I wonder if he is as irked that people like Richard Gere, Jack Nicholson, Kevin Costner, Sean Connery and Eastwood have basically laughed off the entire concept of playing their age, too? Thanks Crowe for reminding us, yet again, that women are always held in contempt for doing anything remotely similar to what their male counterparts do without reproach.
By the way, if you really want a more realistic picture of what women over 40 experience working in Hollywood, I'd like to recommend a fantastic documentary called Searching for Debra Winger.
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Image via Getty.